California Sun

Good morning. It's Tuesday, April 14.

Trump tells West Coast governors he'll be calling shots.
Challenging the "fable" of London Breed's leadership.
And East Coast bias in coverage of the coronavirus.



The Spreckels Theatre in San Diego displayed a hopeful message on Saturday.

Daniel Knighton/Getty Images

Hours after Gov. Gavin Newsom and his counterparts in Oregon and Washington announced a plan to coordinate the incremental reopening of their economies, President Trump declared that he alone would be calling the shots. "When somebody is president of the United States, the authority is total," Trump said. "The governors know that."

Newsom offered no timeline for a transition but said he would detail "our California-based thinking on that effort" on Tuesday. N.Y. Times | S.F. Chronicle

A poll of L.A. County residents found that about 85 percent have confidence in local and state officials to lead them through the crisis. Just 38 percent had confidence in Trump. L.A. Times | LAist


"Is it wearing masks? Probably. Is it continuing to restrict large gatherings? Yeah, probably."

What would a return to normalcy look like? Experts have recommended a gradual relaxation of the stay-at-home order to avoid a resurgence even worse than what California is experiencing now. That could mean, for example, staggering the return of the workforce. L.A. Times

In San Luis Obispo County, where new cases have dwindled, officials are already drafting a plan to let residents resume their lives. "We've been doing all the right things," a health official said. The Tribune


Paramedics responded to a homeless woman who had seizures on skid row on Sunday.

Apu Gomes/AFP via Getty Images

A few of the latest developments in infections and deaths:

Los Angeles County reported just 239 new cases on Monday, the lowest number since March 26. L.A. Times | L.A. Daily News
The Navy is battling an outbreak on the hospital ship Mercy at the Port of Los Angeles. Seven crew members have now tested positive. L.A. Times | KABC
In Riverside County, a nurse assistant who worked at a stricken nursing home has died, her family said. Valeria Viveros was 20 years old. Press Enterprise | NBC Los Angeles

Totals as of Monday, according to the S.F. Chronicle and N.Y. Times:

Confirmed cases:
580,878 in U.S.
24,329 in California
5,253 in Bay Area
16,542 in Southern California

23,607 in U.S.
725 in California

Cumulative infections and deaths in California:

Sources: California Department of Public Health; SF Chronicle

See trackers of cases in California, the U.S., and worldwide.


The Atlantic published a glowing article on Mayor London Breed's response to the coronavirus in San Francisco, which the reporter said had made the city "a national model in fighting the pandemic." The San Francisco writer Joe Eskenazi responded with a scathing column calling that analysis a "fable." Breed, he wrote, grabbed the spotlight from regional health directors while allowing the coronavirus to ravage the city's most vulnerable populations. The Atlantic | Mission Local

More than 90 residents and staff members have now tested positive for Covid-19 at San Francisco's biggest homeless shelter. S.F. Chronicle | S.F. Examiner


Capt. Brett Crozier spoke during an all-hands call on the USS Theodore Roosevelt last December.

U.S. Navy via Getty Images

On March 30, after four days of rebuffs from his superiors, Captain Brett Crozier sat down to compose an email that he knew would risk his career, his friends told the N.Y. Times. The Santa Rosa-born commander of the USS Theodore Roosevelt had been told by ship doctors to expect more than 50 crew members to die. So he hit "send" anyway. N.Y. Times

A sailor serving on the Roosevelt died of Covid-19 on Monday. He was in his early 40s. S.F. Chronicle | CNN


As of Saturday, New York had 44 deaths per 100,000 people. California had two. Yet it's Gov. Andrew Cuomo's daily briefings that have prompted Democratic daydreaming that he could be drafted as their presidential nominee. The N.Y. Times examined how the media's East Coast bias has led West Coast governors to be overlooked even as they've come to New York's rescue with shipments of ventilators. N.Y. Times


Carolyn Cole/L.A. Times via Getty Images

"Tourists aren't allowed in California's most popular national park, but if they could visit, they might feel as if they had been transported to another time."

The L.A. Times sent a reporter and photographer to see what it's like when California's most-visited national park is largely free of humans. They found coyotes ambling along empty roads and bobcats wandering near abandoned administrative buildings. Above, a coyote looked for a meal in Curry Village on Saturday. L.A. Times


An underground nightclub in San Francisco was shut down after holding events that packed more than 100 people in a warehouse. "Cramming dozens of people into an illegal club during this outbreak is like dropping a lit match in the woods during fire season," San Francisco's city attorney said. "Who knows how far the damage will spread? It's the epitome of irresponsibility." S.F. Chronicle | KGO

"7 x $1000 = One Expensive Hang Out"

Santa Cruz police fined seven men $1,000 each for crossing county lines to get "essential" drinks. S.F. Chronicle | NBC Bay Area


A view of Oakland on March 17. Fewer cars means fewer accidents.

Jane Tyska/East Bay Times via Getty Images

Car crashes are down 50 percent in California. That's one reason the state has now ordered auto insurance companies to provide rebates for premiums paid for coverage in March and April. The move followed criticism that the companies' inaction had essentially amounted to profiting from the pandemic. A.P. | Sacramento Bee


Other odds and ends:

Newsom ordered masks from a Chinese company with a history of supplying allegedly faulty products to the U.S. and links to forced labor. Vice
Three Southern California churches have sued Newsom and other officials, arguing that social distancing orders have violated their religious rights. A.P.
"Black Rock City 2020 is in the multiverse." Burning Man, the San Francisco-born festival where anything goes, is moving from the desert to the web. Mashable



Joshua trees are often called Dr. Seuss-like.


California's iconic Joshua trees face the risk of extinction after decades of development and drought, state wildlife authorities have said. They are now recommending that the trees be listed as an endangered species. Conservationists are thrilled. Some area residents aren't so sure. "It would be ridiculous to make it tougher than it already is for citizens to move a Joshua tree in order to improve their property by, say, building a swimming pool," a real estate broker said. L.A. Times | Desert Sun


California archive


A restored still from “A Trip Down Market Street.”

On this day in 1906, the motion picture pioneer Harry Miles climbed aboard a San Francisco cable car and cranked a movie camera. His film, "A Trip Down Market Street," captured a view of the thoroughfare — bustling with horse-drawn wagons, bicycles, and newfangled automobiles — as it would never be recorded again. That's because just four days later, San Francisco was devastated by the great earthquake of 1906.

Now someone has boosted the resolution of the film to 4K using image-editing techniques that essentially fill in missing details to heighten the realism of grainy films. The result is remarkable. YouTube (~14 mins)

Compare it to the unrestored video here


Thanks for reading!

The California Sun is written by Mike McPhate, a former California correspondent for the New York Times.

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